Young Marcia Shaw is not thrilled to hear that a mother's helper named Fannie Farmer is joining her Victorian household to cook for the growing family. Somehow, though, it's hard to complain when suddenly the blueberry pies are "sweeter than a summer sky" and the biscuits are "small, light, and flaky. Just delicious." In spite of herself, Marcia quickly becomes an avid fan and ardent student of Fannie, even encouraging her to begin writing precise instructions to her cookery magic, thus spawning one of the first published cookbooks, Boston Cooking-School Cook Book, a.k.a. The Fannie Farmer Cookbook.
Considered the pioneer of the modern recipe, Fannie Farmer transformed countless kitchens into oases of exact measurements and perfect cooking. Deborah Hopkinson's fictionalized account, complete with original griddle cakes recipe, is a warm, humorous take on the real Fannie Farmer. Nancy Carpenter created splendidly original illustrations for the book, manipulating 19th-century etchings and engravings and blending them with her own watercolor and pen-and-ink illustrations. Wonderful! (Ages 4 to 8) --Emilie Coulter --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Prepared to perfection and served up with style, this historical nugget imagines an interlude in the life of cookbook pioneer Fannie Farmer, who, prior to her stint at the Boston Cooking School, worked as a mother's helper. As Hopkinson (Maria's Comet) envisions it, the daughter of the house--who has a touch of the Eloise gene--is not at all pleased with Fannie's arrival. "I'm your helper," the spunky Marcia protests to her mother, but she soon becomes an acolyte: "Fannie seemed like a magician who could make mashed potatoes fluffier than clouds and blueberry pies sweeter than a summer sky." Marcia's many culinary flops, on the other hand, from discovering that she has cracked a rotten egg into her batter to flipping a griddle cake onto the cat, ultimately inspire the unflappable Fannie to write down precise instructions in a precursor to her immortal cookbook. Cleverly served up in seven brief "courses," the proceedings are garnished with Carpenter's irreverent illustrations, which seamlessly incorporate period engravings within pen-and-wash drawings. Her scenes wittily spoof Victorian decorum, whether showing the perfectly coiffed and coutured lady of the house greedily licking her plate or the initially sullen Marcia, slumped in a chair with her back to the reader, her scowl reflected in a pair of water glasses, a gravy boat and a decanter. The biographical afterword and an appended pancake recipe are simply icing on the (griddle) cake. Ages 4-9.
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.--This text refers to the Hardcover edition. See all Editorial Reviews
I was little disappointed, I thought it would have a better story and recipes.Published 3 months ago by Gran Rains
A great biography about Fannie Farmer for elementary school kids. Focused on her early years which was helpful as most books gloss over it.Published 4 months ago by Nancy Carbone
Cute book about a girl who finds the joy of cooking through Fannie farmer herself. My 6 hear old loves to cook (and so do I). Just another avenue to help nurture that love. Read morePublished 7 months ago by Erin C.
I liked the book Fannie in the Kitchen for the children in the intended age group; however, it could have taught a little more valuable life lesson on overcoming the obstacles of... Read morePublished on January 29, 2011 by M. J. Martin
Fannie in the Kitchen: The Whole Story from Soup to Nuts of How Fannie Farmer Invented Recipes with Precise Measurements- Author Deborah Hopkinson, Illustrator Nancy Carpenter... Read morePublished on October 29, 2010 by Organic Mama Cafe
My granddaughter and I enjoyed reading this book together. At the end of the story is a recipe for pancakes, made the "old-fashioned" way. We had fun making, and eating, them.Published on July 23, 2010 by Muriel Diamond
This was an insightful book into the development of the first cookbook (funny, I'd never really thought about them not existing). Read morePublished on June 12, 2010 by A. Williams
This is a delightful children's book that will appeal to adults, too. It's historical fiction about the real Fannie Farmer. The illustrations are warm and humorous. Read morePublished on December 30, 2004 by Sela Ward
Kids might have seen the Fannie Farmer Cookbook in the kitchen but never known that Fannie Farmer was a real person. Read morePublished on April 30, 2002